And the Rainbow Award goes to:
1) Sandra McDonald - Diana Comet and Other Improbable Tales (Lethe Press)
A writer of whimsy and passion, Sandra McDonald has collected her most evocative short fiction to offer readers in Diana Comet and Other Improbable Stories. A beautiful adventuress from the ancient city of New Dalli sets off to reclaim her missing lover. What secrets does she hide beneath her silk skirts? A gay cowboy flees the Great War in search of true love and the elusive undead poet Whit Waltman, but at what cost? A talking statue sends an abused boy spinning through a great metropolis, dodging pirates and search for a home. On these quests, you will meet macho firefighters, tiny fairies, collapsible musicians, lady devils and vengeful sea witches. These are stories to stir the heart and imagination. McDonald's stories have appeared in many national, small press and online magazines and anthologies including Asimov's, Strange Horizons, Realms of Fantasy and Best New Paranormal Romance. She is the author of a series of novels—The Outback Stars, The Stars Down Under, and The Stars Blue Yonder—about an Australian military lieutenant, her handsome sergeant, and their adventures in deep space.
2) Jane Fletcher - Wolfsbane Winter (Bold Strokes Books)
The story flowed very well, the dialogue was realistic, and the romantic elements were beautiful and sweet without being heavy handed. --Heathyr
The Iron Wolf mercenaries who guard travelers on the Misery Trail are notorious for their quick and casual sex lives. Deryn may fit the stereotype better than most, but she has her reasons. A childhood tragedy has left her wary of forming attachments. If you don't care, then you can't get hurt, but you can still make a mess of things—such as the error of judgment that leaves her with no money, forced to spend the winter on a lousy job in a miserable little backwater. There she meets Alana, local healer, vet, and woman of mystery. It does not take Deryn long to find out that Alana is more than she seems, and has her own perilous secret to keep. Yet Deryn still finds herself falling for the woman, so much so that her come-and-go lifestyle is at risk. This would be bad enough, but serious trouble arrives for Deryn and Alana in the form of demon magic from the Time of Chaos—revealing that old legends are not merely material for ghost stories around the fire. As the danger increases, who do they need to fear more, the living or the dead?
3) Alex Mykals - Nigredo (P.D. Publishing)
I really like this storyline, though it was clearly part of a series, with a bit of missing history to offer as a stand alone book and the abrupt ending doesn't complete the story forcing you to read the next book. --Julie
Considering that this is a sequel (a fact I only discovered after I finished it), I supect the major development of Evelynee & Alleandre happened in the first book. Still, I think Alex did a wonderful job. The cliffhanger at the end is definitely a disappointment but, again, it likely wouldn't have been quite so jarring if I'd realised this was part of a series. A good book, and one that's made me want to revist the first book. --Heathyr
Following the unsuccessful invasion of the Realm of Atlantis by mercenaries, the Heir to the Throne, Princess Evelynne deMolay, and her Consort, Lady Dame Alleandre Tretiak, flee to America in an attempt to hide in the last place their still-unknown enemies might look. While hiding in a small town in Pennsylvania, they discover new friendships, but also new dangers which are no less damaging for being mundane. Meanwhile, back in the Realm, the search for the masterminds behind the Invasion comes to the frightening suggestion that the persons in charge must be very highly placed within Atlantean society.
4) Angelia Sparrow & Naomi Brooks - Alive On The Inside (Amber Quill Press)
5) Naomi Clark - Silver Kiss (QueerEdFiction)
Rainbow Awards: Best Bisexual, Transgender & Lesbian Fantasy
And the Rainbow Award goes to: